WSJ – The “Quidditch World Cup” is moving this year to the Big Apple from Middlebury’s idyllic campus. More than 60 college and high school teams have registered to compete Nov. 13 and 14—up from 20 last year—at a park in Manhattan. “Our hope is that it will be a real coming out party for the league,” says Alex Benepe—one of the sport’s founders and president of the newly formed nonprofit International Quidditch Association. It’s now played at hundreds of schools, he says. Valerie Fischman, who plays Quidditch at the University of Maryland, would like to see it go much further. She’s been finding out what needs to be done to get the sport NCAA status. That, she says, could “be a stepping stone” to becoming an Olympic sport. Kristen Howarth, 23, who founded a Quidditch team with her twin sister at Texas A&M, says initially there were snide comments from other organizations on campus. But they say it’s gaining acceptance. “Some people still think it’s a joke, but when they watch it, they’re shocked at how physical it is,” says Aimee Howarth. She worries that if it gets too intense, it might lose some of its whimsical roots. “It’s good to be competitive, but we need to keep in some of our original values,” she says. Ziang Chen, a sophomore at Purdue University, started a team there last year after seeing videos of the sport. “When I saw how brutal the sport is, I thought I would like to try it,” says the former high school football player.
I know I’ve already talked about Quidditch multiple times on the Stool, but after watching this video and reading about the Quidditch World Cup I came to a revelation. Quidditch and Lacrosse are really the same exact thing. I’m not even joking. The similarities are endless. Both “sports” use sticks. Both sports are played by kids who readily admit they aren’t that sporty and failed at every other competitive sport known to man. They both want to be taken seriously by the NCAA. Both sports claim people will be shocked about how physical it is, but don’t want players to get too intense. Both sports are filled with guys who got cut from their JV baseball team. And on and on it goes. Sure Lacrosse is ahead of Quidditch in terms of marketing, participation and acceptance, but that’s only because Quidditch has only been around for a year or so. I’m sure in 5 years there will be Quid Bro’s everywhere talking about how they were All Americans at Thayer Acadamy and shit.